Saint Matthew Basa Il : Opening of a new Prayer Center
During the recent reorganisation of pastoral entities in the diocese of Basankusu, one of our Small Christian Communities that used to be part of another parish, remained in limbo. This is because they were separated from the church they used to go to and were brought to our side. In order to help them settle and accept the reality of the separation – after a lot of dialogue and persistent encouragement – they accepted to build their own prayer center, since the nearest is quite far.
Even though there are staunch Catholics from the place they never managed to set up any basic structure. As the work of getting their own prayer center was taking long due to the small number of people involved and limited resources available, some of them started even thinking of just going back to the place they were used to. But they persevered and eventually made a thatched structure that can now serve as center for their liturgical gatherings.
I joined them on Saturday for the official opening of the temporary chapel. We had half a night of singing and dancing and the liturgy for the Ascension of the Lord the next day. It was a joyful celebration with members of their old community joining them as well as a big number of members of other Christian denominations. With a well known Lingala song of the Ascension, “Jesus has gone to his Father and has left for us the work”, we encouraged them to continue the work that they had started. Hopefully soon, they will start making bricks in order to build at least a semi-permanent church.
Words fail to describe the joy and the enthusiasm that I saw today. May the Lord strengthen their faith.
Frédéric Botaka MHM